Embracing Anti-Racism Resources

FILMS & DOCUMENTARIES

10 Documentaries To Watch About Race Instead Of Asking A Person Of Colour To Explain Things For You

If you, like many of us, are finding it hard to articulate how to discuss issues of racism, injustice, discrimination and privilege, we’d like to encourage you to take some time to learn and listen. Take some time to watch some (or all) of these important documentaries about race, racial prejudices and privilege within our society. (The links are included to take you directly to the videos.)

 

 

Vital Conversations: An Interactive Video Series on Today’s Realities of Race and Racism with Dr. Robin DeAngelo (author of White Fragility)

https://www.marieclaire.com/culture/a32741905/be-a-better-white-ally-black-lives-matter/

BOOKS

White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Dr. Robin DeAngelo https://www.marieclaire.com/culture/a32741905/be-a-better-white-ally-black-lives-matter/

 

10 Books About Race Non-Black People Should Be Reading Right Now  by Kathryn Lindsay (last updated 6.1.2020)

There’s no guidebook for solving racism in 2020. However, there are multiple insightful resources, published throughout the past century, that will help non-Black people understand the history behind the current movement, as well the roles they can assume moving forward. Fiction and nonfiction works by authors of color stitch a tapestry of pain, injustice, and action that both sombers and inspires the reader towards progress. 

These are ten essential books that all non-Black people should be reading right now about race. We encourage readers to shop these titles at any of these Black-owned bookstores.

So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo – For white and non-Black people who feel they don’t know how to start having these conversations, Oluo has generously provided a resource about how to be honest and thoughtful in examining not just racism in the world, but also white people’s own role in it.

They Can’t Kill Us All by Wesley Lowery – Wesley Lowery’s memoir about the exhausting reality of a lifetime of reporting police brutality and the deaths of Black people in America.


Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge – A look at Black history in Britain as it intertwines with class, and how it resulted in the disconnect in conversations about race today based on a 2014 blog post by the author in which she expresses frustration with dealing with well-meaning but ultimately unhelpful white people.

Beloved by Toni Morrison – This Pulitzer Prize winner  was first published in 1987. Two decades later, the New York Times declared it the best American novel of the previous 25 years. It tells the story of an escaped slave named Sethe who now lives with her daughter and mother-in-law and is visited by an apparition called “Beloved” that threatens her attempts to move on from her past.

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration In The Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander – Michelle Alexander, a civil rights litigator and legal scholar, focuses on the plight of mass incarceration of Black men in the United States.

Between The World And Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates – Written as a letter to Ta-Nehisi Coates’ son, this non-fiction book details the realities and author’s personal experiences being Black in the United States, and how it infiltrates everything from school to the streets. It posits white supremacy is something that will never be eradicated, but instead a force Black people will always have to navigate.

Your Silence Will Not Protect You by Audre Lorde – A posthumous collection of essays, poems and speeches by Audre Lorde, a writer, feminist, and civil rights activist.

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas – Now a feature film starring Amandla Stenberg, Angie Thomas tells the story of 16-year-old Starr, whose childhood best friend is killed by the police and causes her two worlds — her poor neighborhood and fancy prep school — to collide in a life-changing way.

 

A More Beautiful and Terrible History by Jeanne Theoharis – Jeanne Theoharis provides context and realism to the figures in the civil rights movement that have been mythologized throughout history, proving that there’s still so much more to learn than what’s taught in history classes.

How to Be an Anti-Racist by Ibram X. Kendi – (see below)

 

From Diverse https://diverseeducation.com/article/180023/

Five Books That Every White Ally Should Read on Black Lives 6.8.2020 

by Adriel A. Hilton – These books deeply critique American history, society, and culture in a manner that evokes a desire for change. They also present actions on what can be done to advance our society. Overall, they represent a necessary starting point for allies to demonstrate that Black Lives Matter.

How to Be an AntiRacist by Dr. Ibram X. Kendi – Dr. Ibram X. Kendi is regarded as one of the nation’s foremost scholars on racism and anti-racism. Kendi is the author of a number of books and recently announced that he is leaving American University to join the faculty at Boston University. In this book, Kendi shares elements of his own personal story with racism and addresses what it means for people to transition from being racist to anti-racist. In exploring these notions, he offers compelling ideas about concrete actions that must be taken to create a society that does not profit and benefit by exploiting Black peoples and communities. He draws in powerful metaphors about the similarities between cancer and the mistreatment of Black people in American society. 

Black Minds Matter: Realizing the Brilliance, Dignity, and Morality of Black Males in Education by Dr. J. Luke Wood – In the wake of the shooting death of Alfred Olango, an unarmed Black man in San Diego, Dr. J. Luke Wood and numerous colleagues offered a widely attended free online course called “Black Minds Matter.” The course focused on the relationship between the policing of Black lives and the schooling of Black minds, addressing topics such as the school to prison pipeline, over-placement in special education, and disproportionate suspensions and expulsions. Following the course Wood, who is a Distinguished Professor at San Diego State University, released a book encapsulating thoughts and themes from his lectures and personal stories about his own challenges as a Black male. The book offers a framework for educators who want to enhance their ability to serve Black boys and men in education. 

When They Call You a Terrorist: A Black Lives Matter Memoir by Patrisse Khan-Cullors and Asha Bandele – This book is a memoir written by Patrisse Khan-Cullors who is a co-founder of the Black Lives Matter movement. In 2013, following the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the shooting of the young, unarmed Trayvon Martin, Khan-Cullors with her colleagues Alicia Garza and Opal Tometi began a social media movement using the hastag #BlackLivesMatter. This movement has continued to expand following the continuous and expanding social unrest in the wake of high profile killings of Black people such as Michael Brown, Eric Garner, and numerous others. Her book, When They Call You a Terrorist discusses the challenges facing the Black community and the activism that led to the Black Lives Movement. She also documents the personal pain and challenges associated with the media portraying her and her colleagues as terrorists for their advocacy against police brutality and murders of Black people. 

No BS (Bad Stats): Black People Need People Who Believe in Black People Enough Not to Believe Every Bad Thing They Hear About Black People by Dr. Ivory A. Toldson – Many Black people have heard statements asserting that “there are more Black men in prison than college,” “Black students don’t read,” and “Black children fail because single mothers raise them.” In an artfully expressed manner, the book No BS explores common misconceptions, stereotypes, and myths used to put down Black people and dispels them using data. Authored by renowned professor and public intellectual Dr. Ivory A. Toldson, the book dispels common assumptions and provides a more nuanced understanding of the Black experience and appreciation for the power of Black peoples. This is among my most favorite books and should be “required” reading for every White ally in the nation. 

New Jim Crow – Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander – In a popular and powerfully crafted book, Union Theological Seminary professor Michelle Alexander discusses the impact of the criminal justice system on the Black community. In this book she provides detailed insights into how government policies led to the high rate of involvement of Black people, particularly Black men, in the criminal justice system. The book provides an understanding of disparities at every segment of the justice system, from juries, to laws, to political movements (namely the war on drugs) designed to target Black communities. 



 

ARTICLES/PODCASTS/WEBSITES/RESOURCES

ARISE Sangha – Awakening through Race, Intersectionality, and Social Equity http://arisesangha.org/


 

10 Steps to Non-Optical Allyship by Mireille Harper https://www.instagram.com/p/CA04VKDAyjb/?utm_source=ig_embed

(Harper adds: there are genuinely people more experienced than me who warrant your listening to - please go and follow:
@nowhitesaviors@laylafsaad@rachel.cargle@ckyourprivilege@iamrachelricketts@thegreatunlearn@renieddolodge@ibramxk + a few more: @akalamusic@katycatalyst + @roiannenedd)

 

 “75 Things White People Can Do for Racial Justice” by Corrine Shutack

 

Encouraging Meaningful Conversations about Race and Trauma

https://www.mindful.org/encouraging-meaningful-conversations-about-race-and-trauma/?mc_cid=fccda2d948&mc_eid=9a3ac972d0

 

Resources for Unlearning and Transforming Racism (GoodNews

--by The Gratefulness Team, syndicated from gratefulness.org, Jun 13, 2020

Gratitude situates one well to know what can be and must be done to challenge inequity.
It situates one to see opportunity where others see despair.  ~ Lucas Johnson

Message from The Gratefulness Team:

As our organization commits to engaging with and supporting anti-racist work, we share these resources with you as an invitation to join us in learning, taking action, and working toward individual and collective change. We offer this compilation as a starting point with the recognition that the work extends far beyond what’s included here and happens over the course of a lifetime.

How Race Was Made
For much of human history, people viewed themselves as members of tribes or nations but had no notion of “race.” Today, science deems race biologically meaningless. Who invented race as we know it, and why? By John Biewen, with guest Chenjerai Kumanyika.

Black Lives Matter
A global organization that campaigns against violence and systemic racism toward black people.

What Black Lives Matter Means (and Why It’s Problematic to Say “All Lives Matter”)
(Good Housekeeping) Why saying that black lives matter doesn’t mean that other lives do not.

Free Racialized Trauma 5-Day eCourse
“Moving from race to culture is important, transformative, and takes work. A lot of work. I help people, communities, and organizations find strength in healing that is holistic and resilient. Together let’s set a course for healing historical and racialized trauma carried in the body and the soul. I am a healer. I help people rise through the suffering’s edge. I am a cultural trauma navigator. I am a communal provocateur and coach. I consider it my job in this moment to make the invisible visible.” – Resmaa Menakem, MSW, LICSW, SEP.

Our Mental Health Minute
A video series created by psychologists Riana Anderson and Shawn Jones to provide mental health resources for the Black community.

Fearless Dialogues
Fearless Dialogues is a grassroots organization committed to creating unique spaces for unlikely partners to engage in hard heartfelt conversations that see gifts in others, hear value in stories, and work for change and positive transformation in self and other.

Anti-Racist Resources from Greater Good
The Greater Good, a magazine that turns scientific research into stories, tips, and tools for a happier life and a more compassionate society, have gathered here pieces that explore our potential to reduce prejudice in society and in ourselves. You can read their latest coverage on racism, diversity, and bridging differences along with key articles addressing:
The psychological roots of racism
How to overcome bias in yourself
Confronting racism
Reducing bias in criminal justice
Building bridges
Resources for parents
Resources for educators

 

Resources from The OnBeing Project
From the May 30 edition of The Pause newsletter, penned by Krista Tippett: “The question of ‘who we will be to each other’ has been surfacing ever more insistently across my conversations for over a decade, and its civilizational implications have now been laid bare in our economies, our politics, and our cultures.” The newsletter shares the following resources:

More Beautiful  – James Baldwin said, “American history is longer, larger, more various, more beautiful, and more terrible than anything anyone has ever said about it.” Imani Perry embodies that prism. For the past few years, Perry has been pondering the notions of slow work and resistant joy as she writes about what it means to raise her two black sons — as a thinker and writer at the intersection of law, race, culture, and literature. This live conversation was recorded at the Chautauqua Institution.

The Spiritual Work of Black Lives Matter  – Black Lives Matter co-founder and artist Patrisse Cullors presents a luminous vision of the spiritual core of Black Lives Matter and a resilient world in the making. She joins Dr. Robert Ross, a physician and philanthropist on the cutting edge of learning how trauma can be healed in bodies and communities. A cross-generational reflection on evolving social change.

A Small Needful Fact  – A beautiful poem by Ross Gay honoring Eric Garner and other victims of police brutality.

Let’s Talk About Whiteness  – This conversation was inspired by Eula Biss’s stunning New York Times essay “White Debt,” which had this metaphor at its core: ”The state of white life is that we’re living in a house we believe we own but that we’ve never paid off.” She spoke with us in 2016 and we aired this last year, but we might just put this conversation out every year, as we’re all novices on this territory. Eula Biss had been thinking and writing about being white and raising white children in a multi-racial world for a long time. She helpfully opens up words and ideas like “complacence,” “guilt,” and something related to privilege called “opportunity hoarding.” To be in this uncomfortable conversation is to realize how these words alone, taken seriously, can shake us up in necessary ways — and how the limits of words make these conversations at once more messy and more urgent.

Civil Conversations & Social Healing – The Civil Conversations and Social Healing team represents The On Being Project’s presence in the world as they nourish, embolden and accompany the work of social healing. Their organizational capacities to produce audio and digital resources are strengthened by programs and convenings that stitch relationships across rupture and equip for resilience and repair.

Video Recordings: Spirituality and Social Change Symposium
The UMass Amherst Libraries and A Network for Grateful Living presented a dynamic afternoon of conversation, poetry, music, and meditation that explored the landscape of engaged spiritual practice and action for social change on September 27, 2019 at the UMass Fine Arts Center, Amherst, MA.



 

POETRY

“Spell to Be Said Against Hatred”

--by Maria Popova, syndicated from brainpickings.org, Jun 12, 2020

DailyGood News that inspires...

 

“Spell to Be Said against Hatred” by Jane Hirshfield, a miniature masterwork of quiet, surefooted insistence and persistence. Included in the anthology Dear America: Letters of Hope, Habitat, Defiance, and Democracy (public library)

http://www.dailygood.org/story/2530/spell-to-be-said-against-hatred-maria-popova/ and originally published in Jane Hirshfield’s altogether soul-resuscitating collection Ledger (public library), which also gave us the wonderful “Today, Another Universe.” 

Complement it with Marie Howe’s kindred-spirited poem “Singularity” and a soulful reading of Hirshfield’s splendid succor for resilience, “The Weighing,” then revisit Amanda’s enchanting readings of “When I Am Among the Trees” by Mary Oliver, “Einstein’s Mother” by former U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith, “Life While-You-Wait” by Polish Nobel laureate WisÅ‚awa Szymborska, “Humanity i love you” by E.E. Cummings, “Hubble Photographs: After Sappho” by Adrienne Rich, and “Questionnaire” by Wendell Berry.

A few more resources: